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Frame by Frame

Between 2007 and 2014, storyboard artist James Iles played an important role in the pre-production of episodes featuring the Tenth, Eleventh and Twelfth Doctors.
“The whole storyboarding process is about trying to get what the director has in their head on paper,” says artist James Iles.
James’ storyboard art for Silence in the Library (2008) and the monster as seen on screen.

The art of storyboarding, in which a progression of images visualising a film sequence is drawn out by a graphic artist, is traditionally associated with animation and filmmaking. By the early 2000s, much of British television drama was based on the single-camera, cinematic model – so, when Doctor Who was revived, storyboarding became an integral part of its production process. James Iles joined the Doctor Who team in 2007 and remained there for eight years, from David Tennant’s The Sontaran Stratagem to The Caretaker, the fifth episode of Peter Capaldi’s first series in 2014. A jovial Welshman,

James’ childhood interest in fantasy illustration provided an appropriate background for the job he’d secure in adulthood. “In terms of artists in British comics who influenced me,” he recalls, “it was mainly those in sci-ficomic 2000 AD, which I read regularly.

“I studied as an illustrator at Swansea Metropolitan University,” he continues. “I originally wanted to work in comics, but I always had a love of TV and film. After uni, I went for an interview in Cardiff for a theatre design course, and the guy who ran the course pointed me in the right direction by putting me in touch with Ed Thomas, the original production designer on the reboot of Doctor Who. Ed took me on and put me to work, firstly helping out with the concept art. The previous full-time storyboard artist eventually wanted to go into concept work so, over time, I filled his position.”

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About Doctor Who Magazine

This issue includes: • An exclusive interview with new composer Segun Akinola • A candid interview with Eric Saward, Doctor Who’s longest-serving script editor. • Former showrunner Steven Moffat discusses Eric’s legacy. • Robert Allsopp describes his unusual contributions to Doctor Who’s prop and costume departments – from the Sylvester McCoy episodes to the present day. • Alex Mercer describes what it’s like to be one of the current producers of Doctor Who. • Storyboard artist James Iles talks us through some of his stunning illustrations. • Jacqueline King – aka Sylvia Noble – answers questions from the TARDIS tin. • A tribute to Shane Rimmer, who guest starred in The Gunfighters in 1966. • Part Four of Herald of Madness, a new comic strip adventure featuring the Thirteenth Doctor and her friends. • How one cosplayer became the War Doctor’s companion. • The Fact of Fiction explores the 1979 story Nightmare of Eden. • The Blogs of Doom, audio reviews, previews, news, prize-winning competitions and much, much more!